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Bread and cheese mush vs Boilies Mk1 and 2

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Being not quite the full moon, but close enough to it, my standard carping companion and I hit the lake today to see what having something like a plan would do for our success rates.

 

Upon arrival we spooled up the feature finding rod with some yellow braid and then spent some time trying to figure out why the lake appeared significantly shallower than I knew it to be. Other than the realisation that it was the wrong fifty percent of the chances of rigging a float and sinker correctly, we then had to try and overcome the tendency of the jury rigged sinker of twisting the braid. Once that was overcome by letting it sit down onto the float swivel, things went a little more smoothly.

 

By absolute luck, my fishing buddy had bought the 10 foot general purpose rod from Kmart that I thought might work well as a cheap spodding rod. With some very thin 50lb braid on it and the marker float showing a break in the weeds, a few test casts saw the line clipped and we proceeded to pepper one particular area almost exactly two metres to the right of the marker float with tuna oil flavoured laying pellets.

 

Once the correct technique for stopping the spod gently was perfected, splashdown stayed within a reasonable area.

Despite my best efforts, even aiming off provided little difference to where the spod deposited carp snacks.

 

We figured that it was just a reference point and so managed to cast the Mk 1 and 2 boilie into the target areas with little problem

 

But for four hours.... nothing.

 

Then the kneaded cheese recipe was dusted off. 1/4 of a slice of processed individually wrapped cheese kneaded through 3 crustless white bread slices.

 

With some exercise which is sure to develop forearms like popeye, we soon had some boilie sized chunks in our cheesy smelling hands.

 

The first cast proved that a boilie stop wouldn't work so much as retard the little dough ball slightly on it's way to choke a seagull on the bank on the other side.

 

A quick look around proved that the common everyday garden variety small bit of stick worked superbly to keep the ball on the hair rig.

 

So we switched to this bait and within half an hour, had a specimen reaching not quite 5 kg in the net.

 

I managed to have two hook links let go on me, unravelling through the swivels on both rods. Much to my astonishment. One fish we almost had in sight before it turned and just accelerated away like a Monster truck towing Kylie Minogue through a six inch pool of rice pudding.

 

All on bread. Eventually I banked a little fellow that fought far over his weight limit of just over 2kg and then found a big silvery shimmer grazing contentedly in the torch light.... with no rod, of course.

 

It wasn't a bad day out. Might do it again tomorrow.

 

We did discover that taking a compass heading on the marker float can be quite a good idea.....

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The spod and marker can be a bit of an art its not as intuitive to use as you would think but after some practice the intuition will come, I always made the mistake of looking to where I was going to cast, that area should be in the field of vision but your eye's should be on the spod and inclined towards the horizon ready to feather the line and bring the spod in on the right trajectory, at least that's what worked for me.

 

With pastes I've found the best way to keep them on the hair is to buy some small springs and with pliers turn a couple of coils perpendicular to the spring as a loop for the hair, stretch the spring a little then cut to size, they make perfect paste coils, or get some cork or polystyrene balls from lincraft or that art shop at Belconnen, just use them as you would a boilie on the hair then mould the paste around them, that can be used as either a pop up or critically balanced bait, paste is ok this time of year when its cold but once it warms up and the hordes of small Carp and Gambusia are about its time for the boilies or hard particles because there will sweet fa left before paste hits the bottom then. :wink:

 

"But for four hours... nothing" I wish mate I've just gone 60 hours over the last 3 weekends untroubled by any noise from my alarms. :lol:

 

Chris

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Being not quite the full moon, but close enough to it, my standard carping companion and I hit the lake today to see what having something like a plan would do for our success rates.

 

Upon arrival we spooled up the feature finding rod with some yellow braid and then spent some time trying to figure out why the lake appeared significantly shallower than I knew it to be. Other than the realisation that it was the wrong fifty percent of the chances of rigging a float and sinker correctly, we then had to try and overcome the tendency of the jury rigged sinker of twisting the braid. Once that was overcome by letting it sit down onto the float swivel, things went a little more smoothly.

 

By absolute luck, my fishing buddy had bought the 10 foot general purpose rod from Kmart that I thought might work well as a cheap spodding rod. With some very thin 50lb braid on it and the marker float showing a break in the weeds, a few test casts saw the line clipped and we proceeded to pepper one particular area almost exactly two metres to the right of the marker float with tuna oil flavoured laying pellets.

 

Once the correct technique for stopping the spod gently was perfected, splashdown stayed within a reasonable area.

Despite my best efforts, even aiming off provided little difference to where the spod deposited carp snacks.

 

We figured that it was just a reference point and so managed to cast the Mk 1 and 2 boilie into the target areas with little problem

 

But for four hours.... nothing.

 

Then the kneaded cheese recipe was dusted off. 1/4 of a slice of processed individually wrapped cheese kneaded through 3 crustless white bread slices.

 

With some exercise which is sure to develop forearms like popeye, we soon had some boilie sized chunks in our cheesy smelling hands.

 

The first cast proved that a boilie stop wouldn't work so much as retard the little dough ball slightly on it's way to choke a seagull on the bank on the other side.

 

A quick look around proved that the common everyday garden variety small bit of stick worked superbly to keep the ball on the hair rig.

 

So we switched to this bait and within half an hour, had a specimen reaching not quite 5 kg in the net.

 

I managed to have two hook links let go on me, unravelling through the swivels on both rods. Much to my astonishment. One fish we almost had in sight before it turned and just accelerated away like a Monster truck towing Kylie Minogue through a six inch pool of rice pudding.

 

All on bread. Eventually I banked a little fellow that fought far over his weight limit of just over 2kg and then found a big silvery shimmer grazing contentedly in the torch light.... with no rod, of course.

 

It wasn't a bad day out. Might do it again tomorrow.

 

We did discover that taking a compass heading on the marker float can be quite a good idea.....

 

Just a question, are you still killing your fish?

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Nah i ask that, because i am not going to bother reading your posts or pass along tips too you because ultimately you are going to kill the fish & go against the ethos of everyone on this site!

 

:roll: Get a grip you fool!

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Well, I've been looking at carp in a new light since there is an overwhelming love of them in different countries. I'm wondering just how much of the animosity to carp in Australia is misplaced.

Some of the naturalist fishermen that I respect, I'm now asking their opinions about it all and it is proving educational.

There are a few fishermen in the Department of Forestry and Fisheries that I'm talking to that don't share the standard Australian opinions and there are some environmental conservation companies that my ex girlfriend used to work for that have done some surveys in this sort of thing. They might not be interested in talking about their data as it's been paid for by companies that legally have to do this sort of investigation due to the legislation in Australia, but it's possible that they will offer some supporting evidence that mitigates calls for their destruction to the general population.

 

But as such, if you feel the need to withhold your knowledge, that's your choice.

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Well, I've been looking at carp in a new light since there is an overwhelming love of them in different countries. I'm wondering just how much of the animosity to carp in Australia is misplaced.

Some of the naturalist fishermen that I respect, I'm now asking their opinions about it all and it is proving educational.

There are a few fishermen in the Department of Forestry and Fisheries that I'm talking to that don't share the standard Australian opinions and there are some environmental conservation companies that my ex girlfriend used to work for that have done some surveys in this sort of thing. They might not be interested in talking about their data as it's been paid for by companies that legally have to do this sort of investigation due to the legislation in Australia, but it's possible that they will offer some supporting evidence that mitigates calls for their destruction to the general population.

 

But as such, if you feel the need to withhold your knowledge, that's your choice.

 

Oh would that be David at the DFF? If so pass on my regards, been a while since I've seen him on the bank.

 

Chris

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Actually no. But thanks for the lead! There are quite a few passionate fishermen at DFF. :)

 

(I wonder if there are some passionate foresters?)

 

A few years ago, I said literally one wrong word about where some info had come from, to the wrong person at a backyard barbeque on a Sunday.

 

On Monday morning, an entire business unit in a Government Department had interviews with their Assistant Secretary to see who had been giving out their opinions. Handily enough, it was a comedy of errors situation and I found out about it third hand over twelve months later and put two and two together.

 

But knowing that these kinds of things happen, makes me never divulge names. Protecting sources of information means that you can go back later and ask more questions.

 

We're in the information age. Sometimes Information can be traded for alcohol.

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Well that's the small town that is Canberra for you and its public servants, I had a similar thing happen at a bbq with a person who "worked" (though I use that word in its loosest possible sense as all he ever seemed to do was be on facebook) for the bureau of statistics, I very quickly formed the impression in Canberra that the ACT & government in general had finally perfected the art of waste on a monumental scale and was just putting the finishing touches to gross incompetence (read Gungahlin bypass) as I left.

 

Carp fishing is the best thing about Canberra that and the friends I met through fishing in Canberra are the things I miss and that's it, oh yeah and the burger van at Kingston next to LBG that was always good. :lol:

 

Chris

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Oddly enough, the GDE has sped things up incredibly when it's not peak hour..

When it's four lanes all the way (one day) it will be awesome!

 

The 26th was full moon and just for the hell of it, we went out again to see if there was any appreciable change.

 

I was trying cheese and bread balls on two lines in the burleyed area and a curry boilie concoction on another in a seperate area.

 

Things were pretty dead, but for the first time three water rats decided to keep us company. Normally they're pretty entertaining to watch and feed with various bits of bait but three of them together must have been enough for them to decide to put on a floor show. The slapstick three stooges routine of chasing each other around and falling into the water morphed into some synchronised swimming.

 

That was fine, except that they appeared to cotton on to the fact that they could attempt to play tunes by strumming the strings of the odd flashing musical instruments on shore.

 

Maybe someone told them that flashing lights can induce siezures. They sure had a good go at Beethoven's fifth on the four stringed carp harp that we had apparently set up for their musical endeavours.

 

Well, our bite detectors are of different brands.

Eventually we figured that putting food out for them on the burrow side of the lines was the smarter option. The rats snax takeaway pile was repositioned and replenished on the other side of the lines and the encore performances lost their allure.

 

There was a bit of activity on the bite detectors that wasn't attributable to ratmaninov 6lb braid concerto no2 attempts and they now became discernable from the background noise.

 

It was too regular to be line bites, so eventually I struck one out of frustration and hooked a tiny carp. Checking it's mouth size against our baits, it was pretty obvious that this was what was happening. It was trying to gum the bread marble to death.

 

Eventually, I got sick of nothing happening and broke out the trusty zoom focus torch to see if I could see anything on the other side of the inlet.

 

In the murky water, I made out some 70 centimeter plus carp, hovering in about two feet. They always look white in reflected light. Within a distance of twenty metres I counted another thirteen. All almost hovering or swimming very slowly. Definately less active than a normal summers day. (Which is to be expected.)

 

Lining up the marks that we cast against, let me guestimate the areas of depth. More marker float work required there.

 

I went back and sent my companion out to have a look for the carp, but he couldn't see anything.

 

After we packed up at 9, I suggested that we both go and have a look again so that I could point them out and train his eye. There seemed to be even more in the same areas. Wandering further along, I could see a white shopping bag poking out of the water, so that gives you an idea of the depth.

We were amazed to see eight carp of 3 kilo and above investigating it with great interest. There was an empty cup and something else inside.

One was sucking at the plastic in an attempt to get whatever was inside.

It was rather interesting.

 

Keeping in mind some of the observations of the time scales of carp returning to their interest, we watched for a while and then I lobbed a squashball sized rock into the bag.

 

The carp naffed off, of course, but stayed in a rough half circle in the deeper water about two metres away from the bag.

 

So whatever was in there was interesting them. Even as we watched they were moving slowly back to the bag.

Maybe it was competition because of the number there. Maybe something really nice to carp was leaking from the bag.

In terms of observation, it was interesting, but I wouldn't gain any general thoughts of behaviour without many more detailed ones.

 

What was in the bag other than a plastic coffee cup?

Who knows?

 

But it is Canberra, so if a prostitute turns up somewhere missing a head, I'm going to anonymously email the google map coordinates to the police.

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Today was designated as a fishing day, so last night I went out to try the new spomb berley distribution device in an attempt to provide an enchanting environment for carp delectation.

Light was fading as it does this time of year, but not before I got to witness the kind of splash that the spomb makes shortly before it does its underwater oyster vomit trick.

It's more than the normal spod makes, but it's about twice as fat.

 

I faffed a few lobs on purpose to see if I could make it fail to deliver it's load of tuna oil flavoured chicken pellets.

 

Nope. Worked a treat every single time. The only thing you have to watch out for is that the hinge is at the end of the tail fin, so if there is anything on the flat parts that form half the fin near the hinge, it won't close properly.

 

I found that a scoop from the local chinese cheap shop worked brilliantly and let me ladel in pellets in a heaped line to make the best use of the internal volume.

 

In short order I had six kilos of burley distributed across our target area.

 

Then we came back at 9am today to see if it had been worth the effort.

 

Oh, while I think of it, when you actually get a spomb in your hand, it looks rather small. I thought that it wouldn't get as much as the bigger spod we had, so first up for the day was to fill the spomb with our two other spods to compare load bearing capacity.

 

The small spod filled it to about the quarter of it's capacity. The larger spod didn't make half.

It's quite deceptive.

 

Much is made of carp's love of corn, so I figured that chucking out a load of creamed corn with the spomb would achieve a great test of it's disgorging capability and also give the taste and smell, but not a tummy full of corn to Monsieur Carp.

 

And the Spomb handled it like a champ. I'm really impressed with this gadget. If you dripped honey and strawberry jam over Megan Fox, Jessica Alba and Scarlett Johansson, jammed them in and cast them into midstream, they'd get kicked out faster than Fred Nile at a Village People fan club.

 

But onto the day's events.

 

I had noticed that the Google Maps photos and Bing photos of our favourite part of the lake showed the same weed patterns even though they're significantly different in terms of time. They're totally different years and seasons.

 

Because there are some landmarks easily visible, even though our casting spot is hidden by trees, we should be able to find where the optimum spot is in the weeds to put the hookbaits.

 

I had printed out some of the aerial photos that showed points of reference and figured that if google maps were oriented North/South, I could just align the maps and take reversed compass headings off a few landmarks to get our casting point.

 

Because I've measured the distances to a few things around the area with google maps, I could give a good idea of what line and distance we'd need to hit the right spot.

 

So I set about with sighting compass, compensated to 12 degrees east declination and things didn't quite work out. Eventually we realised that there is more than one park bench that can be seen from the other side of the lake. Yet only one is visible in the picture.

 

Eventually, my fishing buddy said that we should just ignore "North" as designated by google and measure the angle between two known points on our side, from a landmark on the other.

 

So we did this instead.

It got us between the two trees that we though we were between and we were able to identify a group of trees on the horizon that lined up exactly with the apex of the feature in the weeds that we wanted to target.

 

Where I had thought this spot was, as I'd seen it in the photos, was about five metres to the right of where we'd burley'd, so I figured we'd target it next trip and see what happened this time. My fishing buddy had drawn that side and so elected to explore it somewhat.

 

We were armed with 1st, 2nd and the new basic 50/50 mix boilies, along with various versions of the bread and cheese ball anointed with some concoction that I can't remember the name of, but it's supposedly a scientifically developed bit attracting chemical.

 

Just in case, I bought some home brand corn. Carp don't appear to be tag hags when it comes to tinned corn. Besides, we had home brand creamed corn as appetiser. They might be be brand loyal. Nobody has tested this yet.

 

And it was very quiet.

 

Even the rats were having a day off.

 

Everything went on as before. But not a peep out of the fish. We saw one jump half heartedly, like it had a hang over, but pretty much nothing. for the first couple of hours.

 

Eventually, we were visited by some pigeons. That was rather unusual.

 

I'm not a big pigeon fan, but I do think that when the day comes that they decide that all politicians will have statues carved, pigeons will have a dramatic rise in popularity as we will finally have a representative that will symbolically speak for us all.

 

The pigeons strolled through our assortment of gear, limbo'd under the rods and decided that the open corn can was their personal invitation to dine on our tab.

 

I decided that as the carp weren't biting, I should attempt to catch a pigeon instead.

My fishing buddy looked sceptical.

 

Little did he know, but I grew up in a house with an original copy of "Graves The Ten Bushcraft Books" The relevant chapter can be viewed here: http://chrismolloy.com/www/p139

 

There was a new rod in the car that hadn't been strung up before as I haven't got around to dividing up the 10lb braid, so I grabbed it and the spare 50lb spod braid.

With a rod holder and a stick, the rod was in rough position. Four bits of carefully whittled, carved and notched stick later, I had a cleared spot with a 50lb orange braid noose on the ground. Once the sear piece was tied into the string and the trigger rod set up, the noose was laid out over the trigger rod. The braid was pulled down to tension up the rod as a spring and a loop wrapped over the empty spool and held with the bail arm.

 

Carp bait corn fuelled the trap and we had a laugh as the pigeons had long since departed.

 

While this had gone on, we were starting to get finicky bites. Not being sure if it was line bites, we persisted with the cheese and bread balls.

Eventually, I tired of this and figured that maybe we had a lot of small carp taking tentative nibbles on something that they couldn't get in their gobs.

 

So I stripped off the bread blob and instead of using the hair, just put the corn on the hook old style.

 

Within ten minutes we had the first carp banked.

Bingo. A tiddler of barely 1 kg.

 

We changed everything over to corn and set back to see what happened.

 

What did was an increase in stronger bites.

 

And then, the pigeons came back.

 

Hilariously, they regarded the trap with suspicion. Even bright orange string in a ring with snacks in the middle says something is up, to a bird.

 

They stood with their feet just outside the braid and pecked at what they could get to.

 

Being that there were two of them, with a third onlooker, maybe they felt that being cautious was eventually less of a concern. They soon cleaned up what was available within beak radius of the string edge and then the one closest to the trigger rod stepped reluctantly into the circle.

 

It pecked at the pile of corn in the middle, just to the side of the trigger rod. It bumped it. But not enough. We giggled like schoolgirls.

 

about twenty seconds later, it bumped it just enough again.

 

This time, it sprung the trap.

 

What I didn't bother to do was to make sure that the rod tip would move enough before it straightened up, to close the noose completely from any point within the circle.

 

Luckily though, the fall guy pigeon was at the furthest end of the trigger rod and the noose of braid neatly closed just enough.

 

We laughed because we initially thought we'd missed.

 

Neither of the pigeons had moved although the trap had successfully sprung.

Then I got up to see what had happened and the pigeons took to the air.

 

One got all of about two feet away.

 

Our second catch of the day!

 

Pigeons are too hard to weigh and the line weight / animal weight ratio was more than 100:1 in the wrong direction.

 

The bird also didn't seem too keen on being tossed back into the water and managed to avoid it, disappearing with its wingmen to parts unknown.

 

I doubt it will raid the corn again.

 

The corn started to produce and as it was getting gently hit, we had to go back to bait checks at regular intervals. I found a 2 kilo plus carp during a bait check.

 

Stealthy [censored]....

 

Eventually I got to a total of three carp and one pigeon when my companion finally hooked up his first fish with our first ever screaming run.

 

It was on a bread and cheese ball. A standard carp of just over 4 kilos.

 

Corn and bread is still beating boilies so far, but I'm sure that the tide will turn as the feeding gets more active.

Regardless, we've got better tactics and technique now.

 

We're recording what we're doing and what we're catching. It's slowly coming together and there is one special project that's on the way.

 

Similar things have been done before, but not in this country and not like I have planned if everything works.

 

We might have something to show you guys in a few months.

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The bird life on LBG is definitely something to look out for especially when spodding I had a flock of ducks fly straight into one of my casts once and the braid took 2 of them out luckily I was able to get them in and released quickly with no harm, other birds to look out for are the ANU girls rowing team which can often be seen at the confluence of the lake and Sullivans Creek. :wink:

 

Chris

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Well, there is more than one reason to fish that creek. Canberra has a few advantages in that reasonable fishing is close to civilisation.

It's purely coincidence that young fit ladies with a lycra fetish feel the need to demonstrate their firmness of body by parading it along the concrete catwalks that seem to bypass our fishing spots.

 

We also get entertained at various venues by Dragon Boat teams, the aformentioned rowers, cyclists, skaters, joggers, dog walkers, skateboarders and occasionally wedding parties.

 

My small binoculars only get used to check out the fashion sense of the bridesmaids and if the groomsmen have appropriately hemmed their trousers to break at the right point on the shoe.

 

Spandex body wrap doesn't have these issues, so I tend to look at other details. We were tempted to make up some score cards to hold up in the hope of encouraging some competition, but it might look like we're there for something other than fishing..

 

We have decided that as pepperoni has been confirmed at a legitimate carp bait, we are going to introduce some of our colleagues to carp fishing. This will be done by way of taking them out, explaining our tactics, pointing out the advances made in carp fishing in the last 20 years, setting them up with baited rods, chairs, bottled fluid of mildly alcoholic content and culminating in having pizza delivered to a GPS location coinciding with ours.

 

There may even be a small whiteboard presentation on the various rigs and the evolution of carp bait, which is where the pizza will come in.

 

Until then, we'll continue to trawl the Internet for information and just keep going out to sit on the banks, hoping to test the integrity of our knots against fish that can't be lifted out of the water by the lines that pull them in.

 

I've been lucky enough to fly fish for trout in Canada and the USA where I could share my swim with raccoons, gators, squirrels and hear the sound of beavers slapping the water in alarm and Elk or Moose roaring off in the distance.

 

It's almost exactly the same in Canberra.

 

I can see the flag of Parliament house fluttering in the distance, sit back and shut my eyes and listen.

I can sometimes hear car alarms going off on the other side of the water and off in the distance, I can hear the roaring of the beanie-headed bogan, with his SS commodore hitting the rev limiter.

 

Ah, Canberra.

Home to swarms of scaley, fishy smelling, bottom feeding creatures of limited intelligence, that turned up by suspicious methods in places that nobody wants them, by methods that nobody is quite sure of.

 

And they're generally despised by most Australians.

 

But I guess every country has to have Politicians.

 

At least we have reasonable carp fishing here.

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